A recent survey by the Bureau of Justice Statistics confirmed college students are less likely to report a sexual assault than those not in college.
This changing landscape is the motivation behind CMU's new Sexual Misconduct Policy, which went into effect March 16.
"A top priority for CMU is the safety of our students, faculty and staff," said Katherine Lasher, CMU's Title IX coordinator and director of the Office of Civil Rights and Institutional Equity.
"This new policy was developed by representatives from across campus who have been working to improve the campus climate with regards to sexual misconduct, while also taking into consideration industry best practices and newly emerging federal regulations."
The policy, which reaffirms CMU's commitment to this issue, applies to all CMU faculty, staff and students. Members of the CMU community now only need to reference a single policy regarding sexual misconduct.
The policy defines key terms, establishes clear processes, and provides information and resources for CMU faculty, staff and students. Some of these topics include:
- Defining what conduct is prohibited;
- Explaining the rights and responsibilities of faculty, staff and students
- Providing information about pursuing on- and off-campus complaints
- Identifying confidential resources; and
- Describing the investigation and resolution processes.
Under the Sexual Misconduct Policy, dating violence, domestic violence/intimate partner violence, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, stalking and retaliation are expressly prohibited and will not be tolerated.
The new policy reaffirms that all CMU faculty and staff, except those named as a confidential resource in the policy, are responsible employees. Responsible employees are required to report any information they know about possible sexual misconduct to the CMU Title IX coordinator.
"Individuals who do not want their concerns reported to the Title IX coordinator can contact confidential resources, such as CMU's
Sexual Aggression Peer Advocates or the
CMU Counseling Center," said Lasher.
The policy also details how CMU will proceed once it has become aware of allegations of sexual misconduct in order to prevent its recurrence, remedy its effects, promote safety and deter individuals from similar future behavior.
CMU policy was updated during the past year in accordance with new national mandates for universities to address sexual misconduct through policies and training.
Visit the sexual misconduct Webpage to learn more about the new policy, get answers to your questions and find contact information if you want to talk to someone or report an incident.
Read a message from President George E. Ross to the campus community
CMU students talk about taking a stand against sexual misconduct